We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Thursday, January 12. 2017
Photo: Salvador Dali and Walt Disney
Love Your Spouse More Than Your Kids, Make Sure the Kids Know It
Semen Is An Antidepressant
First Bumblebee Declared Endangered in U.S.
You can really feel the mascot's frustration in this local commercial
How tort reform helped ignite the Texas boom.
Why Volkswagen’s Emissions Scandal Has No End
The Swiss are serious about citizenship
Tons of good stuff at American digest
Zero Hedge: The future is feudalism
Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire
NYP re Trump: For now, all we know is that a madness has been set loose in America and there is no reason to believe we have seen the last attempt to destroy Donald Trump.
Sworn Trump enemy John McCain admits HE handed smear dossier to FBI - as details surface of document's bizarre journey from British former spy and diplomat
Chuck Todd to Ben Smith: ‘You just published fake news’
IT WAS ALL A HOAX: Intel Official Admits No Direct Link Found Between Trump and Russia
4Chan Claims To Have Fabricated Anti-Trump Report As A Hoax
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What I find hilarious about the BuzzFeed dossier, other than I believe it's a made up piece of garbage, is that they are alleging that for the last 5 years, Russia has been trying to get their hooks into Trump. Because 5 years ago, they knew Trump would run for the Presidency and then win. Really? If I told you 5 years ago that Trump was going to run for the President after Obama, I would've been laughed at. And then if I said not only is he going to run, he will win, pretty sure I would have been mocked further.
A Trump win would be pretty counter productive from a Putin POV, unless he is down with Keystone and "Drill Baby, Drill". Not to mention that, if this stuff is out there in the public eye, it has no extortion value, well except maybe for Dems.
"There is not going to be a President Donald Trump. It’s not going to happen."
- George Clooney, Cannes, May 2016
JS4STRINGS: Because 5 years ago, they knew Trump would run for the Presidency and then win.
More than likely just scooping up information that might be of use. Trump is supposedly a billionaire, and because of his bankruptcies, might need a source of "alternative financing".
JS4STRINGS: If I told you 5 years ago that Trump was going to run for the President after Obama, I would've been laughed at.
Trump ran for President in 1999, and floated the idea of running for President in 1988, 2004 and 2012.
You are so spot on. Also the folks that made up this totally odd, omega male revenge thing suck at profiling. Have they not been watching Trump? The alfa male "pees" all over every foe, for all to see and be warned - he has Obama's job - two years after being dissed in a dinner and he "pees" regularly in twitter, in pressers. He took on the Pope. So we are suppose to believe he'd do some convoluted, secret, passive aggressive thing? Right.
I don't know if Hi-Tech feudalism is the Future but I think it is possible.
Lots of folks have had no problem with the separation of blue collar workers from their livelihoods. I don't think they realized it would also impact those who rely on intellectual capital for their employment, with rare exception. Is your job an endangered species?
I don't want feudalism, but the author's simplified summary of it is way off the mark. It wasn't an easy life, but many Europeans had protections under the law. Certainly, 90% of the population were not slaves. If our society had a total break down of order it would take centuries to achieve the complexity of medieval society. The author describes a cartoon version of that era.
A totalitarian, 1984-style dystopia will not resemble the middle ages. It would be much, much worse.
Am I correct--is that Walt Disney in the picture? If so, who is the other guy?
Thank you Mark. Of course! Also, thank you for pointing out the obvious--it was stated at the top of the page. Damn i am getting almost as dumb as those dems ! ;-)
I think that the left can not handle Trump because he is going to dismantle a lot of their gains that have come over the last 30+ years, and if his policies work, they will lose their huge advantage in blue collar workers and minorities.
On top of this, the closing on the borders ends their long-game strategy of just increasing minorities to the point of being the majority in the US.
I had several clients tell me that if Trump did not win and reverse liberal policies, he would be the last Republican President ever. They were probably right based on Supreme Court appointees alone.
The political left is destroying the reputation for competence of the intellectual left. California now has a big budget deficit. I thought they were propping up all those red states with their taxes.
Mike-K: California now has a big budget deficit. I thought they were propping up all those red states with their taxes.
This map shows the states the most and least dependent on the federal government
Zack...that lame meme has been debunked years ago. Correlation does not equal causation.
More money goes to more southern states because thats where people tend to retire to...SS payments = government $..Fat government pensions = government $...elderly people needing more medical care = government $, etc etc. Also most large military bases are in southern states = government $...any retired person with a military pension = government $.
One thing you'll never hear a southern boy say? "When I retire, I'm moving north for the weather."
You're going to need a lot of therapy.
Dale: that lame meme has been debunked years ago
You apparently don't mean debunked, but explained.
Dale: More money goes to more southern states because thats where people tend to retire to
Yes, that may be part of the effect, but certainly not all of it. Nonetheless, it means money flows towards some states out of others. That doesn't mean recipient states are not contributing in other ways or haven't contributed in the past, but it does answer the question concerning "propping up all those red states with their taxes". It's part of the social contract called Union.
Dale: One thing you'll never hear a southern boy say? "When I retire, I'm moving north for the weather."
No. They go for the opportunity, because many blue urban areas are economic engines.
Zack....so retired people move NORTH because they???...want to not retire, so they move north lookij' for jobs, like people did in the 40's?
You're going to need a lot of therapy.
Dale: so retired people move NORTH because they???...
New York? Los Angeles? Nobody goes there. It's too crowded.
Some interesting correlations.
2016’s Most & Least Federally Dependent States
What's scary and tragic for America is the picture of scumbag media types poring and drooling over all those bogus anti-Trump stories on which they've been dining out for five years. There's not ENOUGH unemployment.
What a cool picture! Takes me back to my youth, building and running live steam locomotives. Doesn't get much better than that.
Yup, me too! I still have the miniature 7inch gauge 4-4-0 American locomotive sitting on a stand in my home machine shop. There's also a new boiler that my Dad started working on 40 years ago but never quite completed.
It's the Carolco and Pacific Railroad, built as part of Walt's near obsession with things miniature. He built elaborate miniature dioramas which he called his "Disneylandia". This grew into what seemed at the time a bizarre attempt to create a 1:1 scale model world, full of walk and ride-through dioramas, surrounded by a railroad, which became Disneyland.
Disney and Dali found themselves to be something of a kind, with Dali trying to tell an entire story in a single image, and Disney taking an entire story's worth of images and making them into a single composed entity.
RE How tort reform helped ignite the Texas boom.
The statute ... reined in liability further by limiting the recovery of medical or health-care expenses to “the amount actually paid or incurred by or on behalf of the claimant.”
this is the "paid" vs "billed" question. plaintiffs aren't awarded damages based on medical bills that have been adjusted downward or written off. this happens because medical providers reduce their rates to be in-plan providers for medical insurance plans. the med people inflate the bills to the patients and negotiate with the insurance companies. the bills are never intended to be paid in full. this makes sense as tort reform, but the problem is not the lawyers, but the medical insurance racket.
also note, up until the last few years, a settlement (over 90% of cases are never tried) worked on the formula billed and estimated future medical expense x3 would be a benchmark for negotiations, with the x3 also accounting for general damages (pain and suffering) and attorney fees. (settlement amounts are lower these days).
in 2011, the Texas legislature enacted partial “losers pay”—in which defeated plaintiffs can be forced to pay a defendant’s legal fees.
this might be discussed in a specific way, and partial cost shifting already exists in a lot of states to rein in extravagant claims, but as a general matter, its a bad idea. for the poor, this rule won't affect a plaintiff-litigant because he or she is judgment proof against a defense cost award. it affects middle class plaintiffs with something to lose and who don't want to declare bankruptcy.
if an injured citizen is against Shell or Exxon or, or, or, he's facing unlimited legal resources. its the plaintiff's lawyer to fronts all of the costs up front: litigation costs including deposition expenses and expert witnesses, whose hourly fees can range into hundreds of dollars an hour, and in a products liability cases involving design or manufacture defects, or a medical malpractice case involving the cause of injury, this amount is enormous. while there are plaintiffs' lawyers who can and do shoulder this risk, the risk of costs if the case is lost shifts to the client, not the lawyer, which is intended to make deter risk-adverse clients mostly during settlement negotiations where the vast majority of these cases are settled and here, its all about the economics of risk.
"tort reform" isn't about justice, its about shifting risk burdens to achieve some social goal. if you're in Victorian England, and want to encourage the development of railways, then you enact legislation that shields railway companies from liability for fires started by engine sparks. if you're in 21st century Texas and you want to encourage a business climate, then you enact "tort reforms" to discourage plaintiffs. these things are what they are, there's no moral dimension of "reform", its just business.
RE Obama begins new career…as a climate scientist
what's the big woop here? anyone can be a "climate scientist", my dogs went to retriever school and they're climate scientists. my cat's a climate scientist. why not little barry? he's at least as qualified as any "climate scientist" around.
"[He]'s at least as qualified as any 'climate scientist' around."
Not as qualified as me. When the temp went up above zero and the snow started melting yesterday here in the Ottawa Valley, I correctly predicted it was due to climate change.
Then, this morning, when the temp started to drop again, I correctly predicted that was due to climate change too.
Still, I suppose Obama has one advantage of me in the climate science field: he'll get lots more money "consulting" than I will for some reason.
Ver. I pronounce you Climate Scientist
Resp. nous sommes tous Climate Scientists
All: the Science is Settled (tm)(r)(c)(pat.pend.)
JJM: Not as qualified as me. When the temp went up above zero and the snow started melting yesterday here in the Ottawa Valley, I correctly predicted it was due to climate change.
Conflates weather and climate.
Ultimate TORT reform = Loser pays the opponent's fees and costs!
You'd see 95% of all tort cases go away or settle in 15 minutes!
Then you'd see the added bonus of 95% of seeing all tort attorneys go away!!!
you understand as much of the issue as zachriels does about the weather, meaning, less than nothing.
L.L. Bean begs.... If L.L. Bean would just clam up about politics and continue to ship fine products at reasonable prices with impeccable ATS service, they would come out way ahead business-wise and reputation-wise. I thought they had more self respect than this, and certainly more business acumen. I may have to shop around more for the kind of stuff they sell.
One of the heirs and board member of LL Bean gave some money to a Trump pac. That's it. She didn't kill any unborn babies, make up lies about politicians or other innocent people to get her way in politics and didn't demand huge under the table payments or money wash cash gifts. If she had done these things she would be OK. But the horrors! She gave some of her own money to a conservative.
This also highlights the problem that climate scientists face. They can make up stuff to support climate change AGW warmy propaganda but they cannot "out" the simple fact that thats is exactly what other "climate scientists" have done and are doing. The tolerant left is after full and complete control of what you get to hear, who you vote for and how your money is spent. Cross them at your peril. This uppity lady from LL Bean will end up apologizing and resigning from the board. I do expect the left to bring back hari kari or perhaps stoning.
L.L. Bean is not "begging" liberals to not boycott - for what self-respecting liberal would ever be caught doing something outdoorsy?
LL Bean's market is people who do soft outdoorsy things like hang around in lodges, take the big dogs for a walk, and talk about sailing. Like me, for example.
That is overstated, as you actually can see lots of Bean gear on summits in the Whites, but there's truth in it.
I figure there have to be 1-2 liberals in that crowd somewhere.
My older daughter was recently married to a Swiss gentleman.
His friends attending from Switzerland, in addition to individual gifts they presented the couple, took a moment at the reception to present them with a beautiful, personalized cow bell.
When attending a World Cup ski race a year or two ago we encountered a contingent of Swiss fans who had carried a rather large cow bell to the US with them and rung it enthusiastically for their Swiss skiers. Quite amusing.
They do love their cultural rituals and their cow bells.
In reference to "Love your spouse more than your kids", I believe it was Madeline l'Engle's husband (and I am going from memory) once said :..the best thing Madeline and I did for our children was to love one another."